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The mission of the Specific Learning Disability Program is to provide students, through individually designed programs, with opportunities to acquire the knowledge, skills, self-confidence, and compensatory strategies necessary to become independent, productive members of society. Students will have access to a continuum of educational services based on their unique learning styles and individual needs.

The SLD program serves students with specific learning disabilities in grades K-12 based on their individual needs. The students are instructed within their general education classrooms to the maximum extent their skills and abilities allow. Accommodations and modifications are provided as necessary to assist these students in meeting expectations, grade level standards and curriculum requirements in general education classes. When a student's IEP goals cannot be met in a general education classroom, a Resource teacher provides direct instruction to the student in an alternative setting (learning lab or resource room) for a portion of the school day. The amount of time is dependent on the student's needs. Alternative research based materials, strategies and methodologies are utilized to address individual learning styles. Instruction for all SLD students focuses on the major outcomes of the general education curriculum at the student's instructional level. This includes reading, written language, oral communication, math, thinking skills, listening comprehension and study skills. In addition, instruction may be provided as necessary in social skills, self-advocacy, technology, career/vocational/college preparation, and adult living (skills for successful participation within society and their community).

To fully understand the criteria and eligibility process to determine if a student has a Specific Learning Disability; please refer to the RTI process.





The primary mission of the Cortez School District in conjunction with the SJBOCES Speech-Language Impairment Program is to provide appropriate speech and language assessment and programming for all students with speech and language disabilities. The Speech-Language Impairment Program is committed to promoting effective communication skills integral for a student's successful participation in the general education curriculum and activities.

The Speech and Language Impairment (SLI) program is staffed by
state licensed and certified speech-language pathologists (SLPs). These SLPs are professionally trained to consult, screen, assess and provide intervention for persons with, or who are at risk for, communication disabilities in the areas of articulation, fluency, voice, and language. SLPs provide a variety of services for students with identified speech and/or language disabilities, including students with autism. They also consult with classroom teachers, parents, school staff and others on ways to improve the language skills and communication of children in general.

Within the SLI program, language is recognized as the foundation for learning within academic subjects. A primary program goal is to maximize a student's communication skills to support learning. A student's communication strengths and needs necessary for school achievement are identified through appropriate assessment within the special education referral process. Remediation of a student's communication impairment is provided through an individual intervention program. Such intervention is intended to reduce the functional consequences and adverse effects of the identified communication difficulties upon the student's ability to function in the educational setting. Students in the SLI program are served through a variety of service delivery models, including service within the SLI classroom and collaborative/consultative service within regular and special education programs.




The purpose of the Physically Impaired Program is to provide students through individualized programming, with lifelong knowledge, skills and behaviors needed to maximize their independence and become responsible, successful and productive as they strive to achieve their maximum potential.

"Orthopedic or Physical impairment" means one or more severe orthopedic impairments and includes those that are caused by congenital anomaly, disease, and other causes, such as amputation or cerebral palsy, and that adversely affects a child's performance in the educational environment.

This program is provided for students who have a physical disability or physically disabling condition that interferes with access to the educational curriculum at school. Students may be affected in their ability to move, coordination, stamina, communication skills, fine motor skills or learning ability. In this program, students are taught the necessary skills to access the general curriculum in the classroom.




The Purpose of the Cortez School District Visually Impaired Program is to provide, in partnership with the student and family, the instruction, materials, equipment and consultation necessary for each student to succeed in educational settings.

The program promotes the student's achieving his/her maximum level of independence both socially and academically.

We view accessibility to curriculum and advances in technology as avenues of equal opportunity for students with visual impairments in their present and future environments.

The mission is supported by a commitment to:

  • The team, consisting of the student, family and teachers, shall be knowledgeable of the nature, extent, and severity of the visual impairment and provide an educational climate to accommodate individual needs.
  • View each student as an individual with unique aptitudes and abilities enabling them to cope with future responsibilities.
  • Assist the student with visual impairments and family in setting realistic, attainable goals.
  • Assess and teach functional orientation and mobility skills in natural settings.
  • Prepare students for the informational age, giving them access to and instruction in current technology.
  • Promote community awareness by building partnerships among members of the community, parents, care givers, educators, service agencies, business and industry.
  • Plan systematic transitions within academic settings and to post-high school settings.
    Assist students with social skills necessary to overcome the possible obstacles visual impairments may have on their relationships with peers and adults.




The mission of the Cortez School District Hearing Impaired Program in conjunction with SJBOCES, is to develop, in partnership with the student and family, the communication skills, academic proficiency, and self-confidence necessary for each student to succeed in educational settings.

The program promotes the student achieving the maximum level of independence, both socially and academically. Provided with appropriate curriculum, technology, and well-trained support personnel, students will receive equal opportunity to achieve success in their present and future environments.




The mission of the Cortez School District Traumatic Brain Injury Services is to provide a continuum and range of services to meet the long-term needs of students with brain injuries in order that they might realize their optimal level of independence both socially and academically.

The mission is supported by a commitment to:
1- To provide a conceptual and organizational framework when determining the need for regular or special classroom instruction.
2- To facilitate the student's safe and efficient transition or entry from hospital or home to the school and community.
3- To provide assessment and direct instruction and support to students as needed.
4- To help students attain the greatest possible degree of independence.
5- To facilitate the establishment of positive social relationships.
6- To provide support and services to the educational team.
7- To provide education to student, teachers, and family about the nature and educational implications of traumatic brain injury.
8- To monitor progress and changes in student's need over time and the effectiveness of the IEP.



Adapted Physical Education at Montezuma Cortez High School


The mission of Adapted Physical Education is to provide developmentally appropriate physical education programming for special education students that qualify for adapted physical education service. The APE program promotes student achievement so those students have the opportunity to develop, improve and maintain gross motor as well as physical fitness skills. APE also provides the student the opportunity to find success performing lifetime physical activities.

400 North Elm Street | Cortez, CO 81321 | Phone: 970.565.7522